Queensland Firebirds dynamite midcourter Kim Ravaillion has had a blinder return to the game in 2021 with an outstanding form that landed her almost every club award as she returned to her home team after a few years much to the excitement of the Queensland faithful.
After taking a year off with pregnancy and the birth of her first child, Georgie, Ravaillion took her game to a whole new level in 2021.
Speaking to The Netball Post, Ravaillion said her homecoming was about finding a balance between motherhood and her career.
“It just felt like home. It felt like I never left. I loved the fact that I was embraced by the purple family and the purple crowd. I felt so confident playing out in front of them again.” she said. “It just felt like home.
“It’s [the game] changed now, so I had to get used to the two-point shot, which was very different from playing normal netball in that last five minutes
“But, it was exciting because I hadn’t done that before. I guess my game has evolved and now I’m just working out how to play that two-point shot to the best of my team’s advantage, so it’s good.
“It’s challenging me and making me work on my skills and growing my game.”
Her return to professional netball must have felt like a return to a whole new world.
After the rollercoaster of 2020, fans, broadcasters and clubs alike held hopes that 2021 would go back to ‘normal’.
While it appeared as though it may be okay for a few rounds, suddenly, the game was on the move.
Ravaillion describes this season as a ‘roller coaster’
“We literally had to live day-by-day and kind of just go with what was happening, in the next who knows, the next one or two hours and plan from there,” she said.
“You couldn’t really plan ahead, you just had to get yourself ready and up and going. Mentally, it was challenging but I guess it just wasn’t me doing it.
“We all rallied together and really found some resilience throughout the season. We finished fifth, so not happy with that result but what we are happy with is how we dealt with all the challenges throughout the year.
The reaction to taking out Firebirds Awards
Kim Ravaillion was recognised enormously throughout the club’s awards night.
She took home the Laura Geitz Medal for Player of the Year, the Players’ Player award and the Members’ Player of the Year Award.
“I guess you never know how you’re going to feel, especially winning a big award. I guess I was hit with so many emotions. As an athlete, you’re taught to be resilient and hold in all emotion and things like that,” she said after the event.
“I still haven’t had time to go ‘wow I can’t believe I did that!’
“I’d just come off having a baby and coming back into playing. The main thing I wanted to do was find the love for the game again and I did that. I managed to play pretty well as well, so to receive that MVP award was something really special and I’m very happy with how I went so I’m proud of myself.
“Laura Geitz has been a big role model of mine, she had a really good balance with her life off the court and on the court. She’s always been a role model of mine and the way she led as a captain, I’ve always aspired to be a leader like her.
“She just brought the best out of you and I was really young when she was captain, but she brought the best out of me as a young player and that’s what I want kind of to want to do with the young group that we’ve got now.”
Want to hear more? Stay tuned for our chat with Kim on The Netball Post’s YouTube from 7pm AEST on Tuesday 28 September.